Dec
20

christmas gifts.

Written by | 4 comments »

What sort of Christmas presents do you buy for your loved ones?  Do you buy them practical, thoughtful things they might actually need (but haven’t/can’t/don’t buy for themselves)?  Or do you go in search of something that they would never expect?  Or do you make homemade gifts of no use?  Or practical homemade gifts that they could use?

From what I can see, Christmas has really become a time for buying people something. Not for the sake of them needing or wanting something, but for the sake of finding something worth buying and then giving it to them for the sake of Christmas.

In a time when there is so much talk about consumerism and debt in our society, I struggle to understand why anyone would buy anything for someone unless it was somehow practical or useful to them in some way.   Surely a perfect gift to receive is something that you would buy for yourself, but just can’t justify the spend.  Hence someone knowing you well enough to surprise you with such a desired luxury is the best gift ever?  I dunno.

But I have put together a small list of some very (in my opinion) practical gifts in no particular order that would be useful to almost anyone.

  1. Food.  Not basic items like flour and sugar, but perhaps more gourmet or organic or specialty foods that are really nice to have but that wouldn’t often make someone’s weekly shopping list.
  2. Bill Payments.  Kind of strange, but think about how nice it would be to know that your rent is covered for next week?  Or that your internet or phone bill has been paid for next month?  It oozes with practicality, but in all seriousness it would be pretty cool.
  3. Health spas.  Massages, beauty treatments, hair cuts, manicures.  So these definitely fall in the ‘nice-to-have’ section of practical but this is exactly the kind of practical gift that is so incredible to receive.  The sort of thing that you can’t list as a priority when money is tight, but makes you feel so incredible afterwards.
  4. Books.  One can never have enough books.  Again, the reason that books make my list is because books are something that I could continue to buy forever and ever until my money ran out.  So if you bought me a book, it would never be a ‘oh you shouldn’t have’ gift.  Last year one of my best friends gave me pretty much the best present ever:  12 wrapped-up books – one to open for every month of the year.  It was possibly the most satisfying, thoughtful and enjoyable gift I have ever received.  (And I got to enjoy it over again EVERY month of this year!)
  5. Towels/sheets.  How can you ever justify spending that extra money on Egyptian Cotton sheets or luxurious bath towels? You can’t really.  And you also can’t ever have too many.  Hence why they make an incredibly thoughtful gift.

A small list, I know.  Any other ideas or thoughts?

  • Carrie

    Love the list- I LOVE practical gifts such as these…

    One year my Grandad paid off our Sky bill for a year- was AMAZING to not ever have to worry about it that year.

    Another one i love to receive and give is a box of a dozen bottles of wine.

    Soooo lovely to have a nice large supply (especially of the Merlot variety). So that whenever those nights pop up that you just ‘feel’ like a glass, there will be one readily available. Or when you need to take a bottle to a friends house but your bank account is scrapping the bottom of the barrel, it’s ok cos there will be one readily available!

    Wine = A GREAT, yum and useful gift that keeps giving!

  • Adele

    Ahh.. this makes me happy, reading this :) Present hall of fame – score xx

  • http://antheawhittle.com Anthea

    Great ideas! I love the wrapped books gift, props to your friend! I like to buy luxury things too – like perfume (great for mum who rarely can justify spending so much on herself).

    I think gifts which recognise people’s hobbies are great too – it shows you know them.

    Pamela for you I think I’d buy knitting needles and wool or knitting patterns, or a cool organic cotton bag to carry your knitting in. Or iTunes gift cards to buy music. Maybe nifty camera lenses or filters or an interesting photography book for inspiration.

    Thinking up gifts can be easy but actually finding a store which sells the right one, not so much!

    xx

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